tv Headline News RT January 17, 2014 4:00am-4:30am EST
this is why you should care what you're only on the altie dot com. president obama is set to deliver a speech on the n.s.a. surveillance methods as many question whether the government is ready to limit the agency's of spying reach. russia spearheads a final diplomatic push a show all sides get a fair say at next week's international peace conference on syria. and u.k. foreign secretary william hague heads north there to try and convince scotland not to go which alone with an independence referendum eight months away. will live here from moscow you are with us on r.t.
international with me it's good to have you company with us the softer news. millions of those who are concerned over the extent to which they've been watched by america's national security agency and i waiting to hear from the country's president he's expected to announce a much anticipated changes to the way the agency works but it's unclear how father reforms will go r.t. same sex reports from washington d.c. . today president obama heads to the department of justice just a few blocks from here and he'll deliver a speech on n.s.a. reforms specifically what he supports from the forty six recommendations his own review panel put forward a few weeks ago the president is expected to devote a large portion of his speech to the privacy concerns of non-u.s. citizens and businesses basically trying to assure foreign consumers that their privacy will be protected when they communicate using american tech companies like google and yahoo now you might remember when it was disclosed that allied world
leaders like brazilian president dilma rousseff were spied on by the n.s.a. the president was quick to order a review of that program but the president has not shown the same concern for tens of millions of non u.s. citizens in germany and brazil and france who are also being spied on so there's a high likelihood that he will finally tackle that issue today now the big question is what happens to the most controversial n.s.a. program revealed by edward snowden and that's the n.s.a.'s bulk telephone metadata collection program the president could order an end to that program right now we could do it today if you wanted to and he wouldn't need congress's approval instead the president is expected to introduce some limited reforms to the bulk collection program and then take it to congress to have the final say on whether or not it should continue the president's speech they will set up a fight on capitol hill between lawmakers cozy with the surveillance state and lawmakers pushing to substantially reform it ultimately though a lot of what happens to the n.s.a. moving forward is out of the president's hands the courts are weighing in on the
constitutionality of these programs and in congress the patriot act which underpins many of the n.s.a. surveillance programs expires on june first of next year and it's unlikely the votes are there anymore to extend the more controversial parts of it so you can think of the president's speech as him reaching out to congress to save at least some of these spy programs that he is spy chiefs have been defending before those same programs are completely. mantled by the courts or congress next year in washington d.c. same socks are to. just wind radek a campaign of full government accountability does not believe that any of the intice a painted changes will make a genuine difference. so far what has been telecast through government leaks look a lot like a lot of cosmetic changes in other words it does not appear that the president will be bringing in the largest controversy with this probably the bulk collection
of american data nor will he be adopting any recommendation to the house and store that data in for example a telephone company rather than by the national security agency again i think a lot of these changes are really discussed matic and there are contrary to what his own internal review panel recommended us democratic congressman rush holt is more optimistic that he told us about a bill that he proposed will reining in the n.s.a. it does several things it grants whistleblower protection to members of the intelligence community it would prevent the n.s.a. or any similar agency from installing back doors into hardware or software the bill would also remove the justification that the n.s.a.
has invoked for seizing the metadata of virtually everyone saying that they will treat it with care and we won't abuse people's civil liberties unless we suspect that we don't want those who are doing the surveillance to be the very same ones who decide who the bad guys are. now spying on the whole world doesn't come cheap but the actual figures as well with much else in the field of intelligence are top secret leaked information however has revealed that those so-called black budget amounted to fifty two point six billion dollars for twenty thirteen fiscal year out of the pirate over ten billion went to the n.s.a. its funding has grown by staggering fifty three percent since two thousand and four yet sources say that terrorist detection methods only involve as a surveillance of seven point five percent of the time it is granted if you can looks into the agency's effectiveness three years the u.s.
government had been hiding its dragnet surveillance of entire nations under the national security rug in fear of another nine eleven americans had no idea of just how pervasive the government spying program became but following edward snowden's revelations lice came to the surface does the n.s.a. collect any type of data. on millions or hundreds of millions of americans. no sir. we know of at least. fifty threats that have been averted because of this information. there is only one case where this was useful somebody somebody thought eighty five hundred dollars to somalia to an al qaeda affiliate not to be encouraged but even in that case the government wait of two months to investigate this case so you know the idea that this is kind of critical to stopping terrorism is overblown public policy group the
new america foundation has analyzed hundreds of terrorism related cases and says traditional investigative methods such as the use of informants in tips work best. the n.s.a. sweeping surveillance did nothing to prevent the bombings in boston last year even despite multiple tips from abroad concerning one of the perpetrators the president's own surveillance policy review board has concluded the n.s.a. bulk data collection was quote not essential to preventing attacks the head of the n.s.a. was eventually pressed to admit that the government had exaggerated the effectiveness of the program would you grant the fifty four cases you keep getting cited by the administration for not all plots how the verge for high thirteen had some nexus to us do you agree with that yes or no. yes the obama administration found itself in hot water when edward snowden revealed that the n.s.a.
was busy spying on allies and trading partners and not just terrorists the n.s.a. has built a vast new center you talk to store people's private data and much of it will have nothing to do with terrorists what we're doing is advocating tower tarion procedures which is gathering information about all the individuals in the world. thousands have been taking to the streets to protest against what they see is their government becoming big brother when in the wake of nine eleven the patriot act or for an end to privacy many americans thought at least they'd be safe but with recent revelations even that tradeoff is under question in washington i'm going to check on our team. head to our web site to learn more about america's surveillance efforts and get expert analysis on what to do with by means for the rest of the world and of course we'll bring you more on president obama's upcoming speech later today here on r.t.
. last ditch diplomatic efforts are in full swing to bring all keep players to the upcoming international peace conference on syria some major issues remain to be ironed out with less than a week left before the summit kicks off in switzerland let's get the latest from artie's a regular school joins us live a read of the russian foreign minister is hosting his a syrian counterpart in moscow now what has come out of this meeting so far well of course one of the main issues that were covered during that meeting of course is the presence of all the parties that would really should be involved in the geneva two conference and so far we know that the syrian national coalition has been dragging its feet trying to decide whether or not they're actually going to be present at the geneva conference in fact they've had so much disagreement over this that several of its members have actually stay. out from the coalition however moscow is also concerned with the fact that the s.n.c. isn't quite representative of the syrian opposition in fact perhaps you could say
quite the opposite about it because it actually is not situated inside syria itself where is most who really would like to see some of the syrian opposition factions which are contained within the country to be present at the geneva conference and this is exactly what the russian foreign minister has underlined during the news conference because. we find it quite alarming that our western partners have focused entirely on persuading the syrian national coalition to attend the geneva two conference while ignoring the other patriotic opposition groups which operate inside syria and are interested in going to geneva. first and foremost i'm referring to the national coordinator committee as well as the kurdish groups. on top of that of course there are other members there are there are there are others who would like to see present at the geneva conference and that is the
representatives from iran however most would like them to be fully fledged members of the talks wearers other parties such as the us believe that iran should only be there in the observer state there's a looking on from the sidelines another thing that was covered during the meeting between the russian and syrian foreign ministers of course was the situation in syria itself particularly the issue of humanitarian aid that has been a burning one for quite a while and it does seem like the syrian government has made a huge step forward in that direction and in fact there is information that the syrian government along with the u.n. already working on that on trying to distribute that humanitarian aid within the country however are russia believes that the syrian opposition should also take on a role and guarantee safe passage for the humanitarian aid in order for it to reach the people who are in the dire need on top of that the syrian foreign minister has said that they are ready to talk about reestablishing peace or at least ability in
the region aleppo one that has been hardest hit by violence in the recent weeks and as a guess and as you can see a proof of that of that sincere efforts of the syrian foreign minister said that in fact the government is ready to have a list of prisoners that they are willing to exchange with the syrian opposition fighters on the ground in syria and he also requested moscow to aid them in that regard there also has been speaking of aid there's also been a couple of things that were mentioned and that was concerned with the fact that the concern was also voiced by the syrian foreign minister of course is that it's not quite clear where the financial aid which is directed towards the syrian opposition. is exactly going on in moscow and moscow moscow insists that the u.n. actually publicize the information about the financial aid towards the syrian
opposition eerie not so much that these diplomats and authorities and foreign ministers have to deal with but we will keep us posted on how this all goes arena there with the details on how the syrian talks that will take place in geneva in the next couple of weeks is all panning out. right washington is also urging the syrian opposition to attend the geneva two summit but the top u.s. diplomat has come out with a sharp condemnation of extremist activity in syria secretary of state john kerry says the country has become a hotbed for terrorist groups seeking to capitalize on the strife of the syrian people world needs no reminder that syria has become the magnet for jihadists and extremists it is the strongest magnet for terror of anyplace today so it defies logic to imagine that those who bruges whose brutality created this magnet how they could ever leave syria away from extremism and towards
a better future is beyond any current of logic or common search france is among the countries that will be attending the geneva two conference the country has voiced concern over hundreds of its nationals fighting alongside the rebels in syria amid fears still return home radicalized a former french prime minister told us that the talks in switzerland must take place without preconditions. i believe we have two problems one is we need of cause the opposition to take part in this discussion because how can we have any settlement without having everybody around the table but also we have within the opposition a very strong. very strong fights between the two parts of the political opposition and the jihadists are fighting very strongly on the ground i think we should take away the jihadist all the people that are behind al qaeda and we should not focus
on the problem of assad we should not have any preview condition. before starting this political discussion the i really believe that iran should be as much as possible part of the talks because you are an easy very regional players and if we can have iran on board in discussing the crit crises of the region we'd of course we will be much more efficient. i still ahead for you the solid the fall months living on the constant fear of violence. and us with our lives and the right the family to go to war from the door to our correspondent yes from white south africans who say the country is racist to far from equal treatment when it comes to security we'll have all these stories just up to the breaking.
the. economic down in the final. days. and the rest of life doing the makes you believe if we. welcome back you're watching our team so it is putting the final touches and praise for the twenty fourteen winter olympics well in tears of a writer from all over the world and then now to get a very inspiring briefing. olympic volunteers are actually meeting with president putin no less and it's no less than they deserve if you ask me because volunteers to perform a very important role in every olympics not only do they meeting greet the delegates and also the athletes and members of the public they do help to guide these people around the host city and other responsibilities also include things
like translating a press conferences and also escorting athletes to doping control so there is a lot of responsibility there will be twenty five thousand of these volunteers on duty in salt you does sound like a very big number but actually these are the chosen few because organizers did receive something like one hundred fifty thousand applications from people all over the world from places like garner a dominican republic but they have managed to work from them down just over half of them are from russia the rest of from around the rest of the globe and the the age range goes from eighteen years all way up to people who are eighty years old so there is something for everybody but they do have certain common skills number one they do have good language skills secondly we're told they do work well under pressure and lastly of course they have to have a nice smile because they are here to make us all feel welcome you won't miss them either because they will be wearing those bright colored trucks. the people of
scotland have eight months left to decide whether to split from the u.k. and london is making its concerns clear that britain's minister for europe warning that an independent scotland would not get an easy pass into the european union foreign secretary william hague is also determined to keep the scots in the fold details now from police work. ek foreign secretary william hague is in glasgow today to outline the case for why scotland should stay within the united kingdom. say the latest scotland analysis papers which are a response to scotland's white paper which came out last november and propagated voting yes in the referendum in september now the analysis today is doing the direct opposite and it's focusing on the breadth of the u.k.'s diplomatic network and just how much scotland currently benefits from it so take for example business based in scotland they say that it benefits directly from efforts to protect the
u.k.'s economic interests like defending the world famous squad whiskey against counterfeits against excessive taxation and against trade barriers but the battle from both the yes and no camps is really heating up in the run up to the referendum in september and we've had accusations of propaganda wars being waged from both sides of the barricades certainly critics of westminster have accused the british government of fear mongering in order to secure a no vote to come september but let's take a listen to what the minister for europe said about scotland's independence bid just yesterday first of all of scotland quits walks it leaves behind all that it gets as part of the united kingdom not just about membership of the e.u. the un security council the commonwealth the g eight the g twenty but in very concrete terms we've got this very large international network of embassies and
high commissions around the world scottish business including things like scotch whisky scotish a group called to produce and beef and so on. the analysis unveiled today goes as far as reminding scots about the relatively modern day in pleasures that they currently enjoy as british citizens such as consular services when they travel abroad but we know that westminster is better together campaign is really stepping up the fight for the union and sort of love bombing the scots with pleas to stay in the united kingdom from english celebrities prominent business figures and sports stars but in reality scottish independence is quite a remote possibility according to the latest polls just twenty six percent of scots plan on voting yes come september so the war of words on both sides is certainly hosking are going to do what change as it progresses in the run up to the historic
vote on the eighteenth of september a quick look at what's in store on our website to building a home from scratch in under a day for years scientists will see very soon this will be no challenge for a new generation of giant three d. printers now we've got the bottom of the technology our t. dot com. of almost rory is a slam dunk awful big corps and the n b a club becomes the first professional sports organization to accept the digital currency find out which team gave its big news of the bands plenty to cheer about online. south africa's government has vowed to tackle violent crime with a problem that it serves places them equal threat for all races living in the country many white farmers see things differently though and see they're living under constant fear of attack last year here's this side of the story. willie
is fixing his fans last night burglars again tried to break into his farm two weeks ago they stole equipment after killing six of his horses they threatened us with their lives and that they were all right the family got a wife and daughter. told this to the police and they've done nothing about it for thirteen years when he has lived here in south africa the successful farmer grew and sold horse feed but three months ago he gave it up the constant harassment that he's convinced is coming from some of his former black farm laborers had simply become too much in fact last week. they arrived a woman not far from here and she said to the ng well if you want to use a condom and they boil the kettle a board or. water on the back because i think the they saw that she was not afraid . farm killings in south africa have hit a record highs according to genocide watch in the last twenty years since nelson
mandela's african national congress has been in power more than four thousand white farmers have been killed but ten times that number of white south africans have been brutally murdered in what many claim of racially motivated attacks an hour's drive from where his farm and cornelius mill has been farming cattle and maize for maybe forty years he's convinced the killings are part of a systematic good to drive white south africans and in particular farmers out of the country he's paid the ultimate price his daughter vanessa was shot dead on his farm. where he was still a. permit to carry a gun used to short the thirty three year old was killed in front of her two small children from the years. i think the farmers the these really
old farmers was good of the way i mean the government is saying that. we're going to take the forms because we stole the ruling a.n.c. has dismissed such claims pointing out that south africans of all colors suffer violent crime i don't. belong to all who live image. both black and white and there's never been an intention to victimize wides and division in the mission of the south african police service is to protect everybody any citizen but the recent passing of nelson mandela he devoted his life to be consigning the races has seen white nerves shoot up personally i think it's going to get worse. for because they were skewed for you if true it's a sad legacy for a man who devoted his life to building a rainbow nation the unfortunate reality is that south africa is still a very racially divided country there's a huge discrepancy between the haves who tend to be white citizens and the have
nots who tend to be blacks who live in townships like this one paula c.r.t. south africa in other news around the world of this hour twenty eight people have been reportedly in the highland capital after an explosion hit an anti-government march the device was thrown from a ruined building on onto a truck carrying protesters rallies have been raging all week in bangkok with crowds demanding their government be forced from power the prime minister is insisting on a snap election in february in an effort to calm the situation. at least five people have been killed in a blast ripped through a moving train in central pakistan local media says that around twenty others will also injured in the explosion which derailed seven carriages but train it was travelling up from the northern city of peshawar to karate and the south it's unclear who was behind the attack. during his ongoing visit to
moscow the foreign minister of iran said on with our teaser so we have a nazi to discuss the future of peace efforts in syria and plenty more that interview is next on r.t. and i'll see you tomorrow. the majority of congress are now millionaires for the first time in history according to the center for responsive politics which sounds pretty insulting when the average american is not doing so well financially this seems bad like a bunch of rich guys rule the country which they kind of do but one could argue the congress isn't rich enough first off due to inflation a billion dollars is not as much as it used to be especially the cost of around a campaign to get in the congress costs around one million six hundred thousand dollars million dollars of net worth may sound pretty rich to you or me but the
expensive game of us politics these guys can't even afford the costs related to getting the work electoral campaigns are a big money affair so it is no surprise that people like you or me can't get into the law making business without selling at least a little piece of our souls to someone who has very deep pockets so again the problem isn't that congressmen are wealthy it is that many of them have to get constant financing in order to maintain their positions and as you average folks know once you're in debt they've got you by the throat well that's just my opinion . hello and welcome to sethi and i'm certain shevardnadze the foreign minister of
iran is in russia had in the next round of syria peace talks when the new clara negotiations finally progress in tehran is saying to put us in the doors open can't help solve the syria question what is being discussed with moscow and we'll hear read name engr. continue. to find out firsthand. iran is on the verge of a diplomatic breakthrough. nuclear program may be over. the group of crippling sanctions seems closer than ever and world powers are even asking for iran's help in ending the war in syria on top of that there's a new billion dollar trade deal with moscow in the works our troubles over is the islamic republic on its way back into the international scene. turn into a lasting sprees.